When driving next to a semi-truck, it may be common to feel nervous – to grip the wheel tighter, speed up, slow down, or change lanes to avoid being directly next to the truck. This may be for good reason, because of the very large size of the vehicles for one. In addition, the semi-trucks we see every day on the road also may be transporting hazardous materials.
The Hazardous Material Transportation Act of 1975 empowered the Secretary of Transportation to designate hazardous materials as “any particular quantity of form” of a material that “may pose an unreasonable risk to health and safety or property” (https://www.osha.gov/trucking-industry/transporting-hazardous-materials). Additionally, the Hazardous Materials Transportation Uniform Safety Act of 1990 requires the Secretary of Transportation to regulate the safe transport of hazardous materials in intrastate, interstate, and foreign commerce. All drivers who are transporting hazardous materials are required to undergo training and follow protocols while transporting these materials to ensure safety. Although these protocols and regulations are in place, accidents may still occur and can have devasting impacts. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has also identified different hazardous materials, requiring that a vehicle transporting such materials display a clearly visible card around the trailer to ensure that other drivers on the road are aware.
A recent report revealed the dangers. According to the news report, two people died after a fatal crash on US-12 in Berrien County, Michigan. The driver of a liquid-propane hauler was traveling eastbound when the driver crossed the median and struck a gasoline hauler head-on. Although some liquid propane leaked from the truck, it was quickly contained. The driver of the liquid-propane hauler was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the gasoline hauler was transported to a local hospital, where he later died from his injuries. Initial investigations revealed that both drivers appeared to be wearing seatbelts, although the cause of the accident is still being investigated.
What Should You Do After a Maryland Truck Accident?
When you are involved in a trucking accident, it can be scary for a multitude of reasons, including the unknown dangers of the types of materials the truck driver is carrying. It is important to contact emergency personnel in such a situation and to move to safety if possible. If you have been injured because of a truck accident, connecting with an experienced attorney can make all the difference.
Have You Suffered Injuries in a Maryland Truck Accident?
If you or someone you love has suffered injuries after a truck accident in Maryland in Prince George’s, Charles, Baltimore, or Montgomery County, contact the lawyers at Lebowitz & Mzhen LLC today. Our firm has attorneys with years of experience handling some of the most complicated personal injury cases, and our attorneys are ready to use their expertise to help you. Figuring out which steps to take in a lawsuit can be daunting, but you don’t have to figure this out alone. Contact us with any questions, and see if we can help with your claim. Call us today at 800-654-1949 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.